Major aviation trends to watch out for in 2019

Discover the aviation trends set to define industry development during 2019 in order to plan your approach to career development strategically.


Aviation trends in 2019

Here are some of the most notable aviation trends set to make an impact on the industry next year:

1) Technological developments

• The use of artificial intelligence in aviation is set to balloon at a compound annual growth rate of 46.4% between now and 2023, which is likely to impact all areas of the industry.

• Digital in-flight shopping solutions such as SKYdeals and AirFree may start to put duty-free trolleys out of action from 2019.

• With favourable new FAA regulations and rapid technological development, heads-up displays (HUDs) are likely to grow rapidly in popularity among pilots during 2019.

• Hainan Province may offer a glimpse into the future of China’s aviation industry. The government here has agreed to provide unrestricted Internet access and lift all restrictions on foreign aviation investment.

2) Aircraft orders

• Saudi airline flyadeal is weighing up whether to order 30 narrowbody Airbus A320neos or Boeing 737 MAXs in a deal that will influence the financial performance of both over the coming year.

• Air Europa has expanded its order of 22 Boeing 787-9s (a deal worth $3.5 billion) by an additional five aircraft. The 12 aircraft now on order are set for delivery between now and 2022.

American Airlines has just completed a $705 million deal for 15 new Embraer E175, bringing the total number of E175s ordered by the airline to 104. The aircraft will be delivered by the end of 2020.

Emirates may decide to cancel its remaining order of Airbus A380s due to a disagreement between the manufacturer and Rolls Royce, who designs and manufactures A380 engines.

• In India, IndiGo has increased the number of Airbus A321neo aircraft it’s set to receive from 25 to 150. This has been offset by a reduction of 125 in the number of A320neos the airline is due to receive.

3) Airline performance

• The realities of Brexit will finally take hold in 2019, which risks causing disruption in a variety of ways. However, Wizz Air has set out its plan to take advantage of the turbulence.

• Ailing airline FlyBe has been in talks concerning a potential takeover, with Virgin Atlantic emerging as the most likely contender. Cardiff Airport, in particular, could suffer should the airline go under.

• Following Icelandair’s purchase of rival low-cost carrier Wow Air, 2019 will show whether this “marriage of convenience” will bear fruit, or reflect the negative performance of tourism in Iceland.

4) Growth sectors

• European aviation has outstripped growth predictions this year, and this trend appears likely to continue. However, the aviation skills shortage could start to apply the brakes here.

• Asian countries look set to see the most rapid growth rates in 2019. China, Pakistan and the ASEAN nations, in particular, appear poised to make great strides over the coming year.

• The air freight industry is likely to see a boost due to the increasing popularity of next or same-day delivery among online shoppers.

• With Emirates and American Airlines among the latest to introduce ‘premium economy’ options, this model is set to experience a boom (at the expense of traditional ‘business class’ capacity).

So much is forecast to occur across the industry during 2019. But, keeping these aviation trends top-of-mind during 2019 will stand you in good stead for the year ahead.

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